Teri James, executive director of the Downtown Langley Business Association, said online voting kicks off at 10 a.m. today (Wednesday, June 6) and continues until July 11.

VOTING: What kind of new business do Langleyites want downtown?

Public picks one of five proposed companies vying to win a $130,000 Start It Up Langley contest.

It’s up to the voting public which of the top five contenders will be the next new business to set up shop in Downtown Langley.

Downtown Langley Business Association (DLBA) held its Start It Up Langley contest earlier this spring, and after reviewing all the submissions, judges have whittled that list down to just a handful – all food-oriented establishments, said executive director Teri James.

“We’ve narrowed it down to five outstanding semi-finalists who all have something unique to bring to the Downtown Langley community,” she said.

The winning business in the Start It Up Langley contest will receive more than $130,000 in prizes, including six months free rent, marketing support, legal and accounting set up, business coaching, a grand opening reception, and more.

“We’re very excited to turn this over to the public to see what they would like to have as a business in downtown Langley City,” James said, revealing the list the five finalists.

• Clayton Height’s resident Cliff Dalrymple | The Pink Donut Cake Shop, “offering delicious specialty donuts and cakes that are baked fresh daily.”

• Langley’s own Jennifer Henderson | Elevate & Anchor — A Tea Shop & Wellness Studio, offering “a peaceful space where customers can enjoy a relaxing blend of teas and participate in wellness classes.”

• Maple Ridge resident Chaylene Lidell & Shaughnessy Keely | PinkAVO Cafe, “offering healthy, vegetarian, and vegan-friendly food, vibrant decor and Instagrammable pink lattes.”

• Walnut Grove resident Brian McKenna | Old Ted’s Cure – A Salmon Boutique “offering fresh cured and smoked salmon and specialized culinary equipment.”

• Cloverdale’s Vicki Nguyen | Phound – A Dessert Shop & Bakery, offering “a place where smiles, memories, and delicious sweets are made using local ingredients.”

There were more than 50 applicants, but “unfortunately many didn’t meet the criteria for the retail component,” James explained.

As well, the contestants were required to put up a $30,000 capital commitment of their own, which she said disqualified several applicants.

“Our criteria wasn’t unrealistic, just required. Canada Revenue Agency check, Criminal Records check, some capital funds of their own and a business plan that made sense,” James elaborated. “It wasn’t easy, but I strongly believe that [the judges] did their due diligence. Our goal is to ensure the success of the new business, and the dotted Is and crossed Ts will go a long way to ensure the success and future of this new and exciting business.

“$130,000 for a business start-up doesn’t just happen, you have to work for it, and we believe these five semi-finalists have worked for it,” James added, saying they now have more work to do.

Finalists are now tasked with gaining as many online votes as possible before July 11.

The three proposed companies with the most votes at that time will proceed to the final judging round, James explained.

Contest judges – members of the Langley business community – will then select the winner of the grand prize, and the winner will be announced July 16.

Asked if there are plans to host this business contest again, James wasn’t sure, yet.

Admittedly, she said, it’s a lot of work and takes a huge commitment from a lot of “incredible” sponsors to pull off a competition of this magnitude.

“Maybe in two years, and if so, we would open it up to second locations and re-locations. There’s a lot of successful and thriving businesses that we would love to have in downtown Langley City,” she said.

In the meantime, members of the public are invited to vote once per day until July 11 at startituplangley.com.

Just Posted

Maple Ridge has resident removed from Anita Place

Dwayne Martin has agreed to a timeline that will see him leave the encampment.

Looking Back: Searching for Pitt Lake gold

‘Facts and fantasy in the Legend of Slumach.’

Surrey RCMP launches online crime reporting tool today

The online crime reporting tool goes live Monday but for emergencies people should still call 911

Sun shines on Car Free Day in Maple Ridge

First ever event featured live music, vendors and activity stations

Cyclists take over Maple Ridge

More than 100 cyclists took part in the 17th annual Race the Ridge

‘This is unbelievable:’ Raptors dazzled by massive crowds at downtown Toronto parade

Mayor John Tory declares it ‘We The North Day’ after team’s historic NBA title win

Elusive ‘ghost whale’ surfaces near Campbell River

Ecotourism operator captures images of the rare white orca

Oil and gas sector cautious as deadline on Trans Mountain decision nears

Trudeau government expected to announce whether it will approve pipeline for second time on Tuesday

Skipping school costs a dozen B.C. students chance at a new car

Cowichan’s Jared Lammi showed up and won $5,000 cheque toward vehicle, but he can’t drive

BC Ferries adds extra and late night summer sailings

Seasonal adjustments to sailing times also in effect on many routes

People throwing food at a bear in Fernie alarms conservation groups

“Approaching and feeding bears contributes to habituation,” says conservation group

Feds announce $50M strategy to fight dementia

Emphasis is on prevention and and supporting caregivers

Federal Liberals’ plan to help first-time homebuyers to kick in weeks before election

Ottawa to pick up 5% of a mortgage on existing homes for households that earn under $120,000 a year

Parents of B.C. murder victim want her personal belongings back

Lisa Dudley’s parents, Rosemarie and Mark Surakka, were at the Mission RCMP detachment Sunday

Most Read